U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker Announces Dr. Ellen Hughes-Cromwick as New Chief Economist


Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker announced that Dr. Ellen Hughes-Cromwick will serve as the Department of Commerce’s new Chief Economist. Dr. Hughes-Cromwick is on leave from the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, following a distinguished, 18-year career with the Ford Motor Company.

“I am so pleased to have Ellen join our team as our new Chief Economist,” said Secretary Pritzker. “Her strong background in economics, extensive experience in the private sector, and work with the automotive industry makes her the perfect addition to help the Administration spur economic growth and opportunity for American businesses and workers. I look forward to working with Ellen on a range of critical business and economic issues facing our nation.”

Prior to her appointment at the Commerce Department, Dr. Hughes-Cromwick was an adjunct professor at the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan. She spent the majority of her career with the Ford Motor Company, where she served as the chief global economist. She joined the company in 1996 and was promoted to chief economist in 2004, where she focused on global economic and automotive industry forecasts used to support Ford’s business strategy, finance, and planning. Dr. Hughes-Cromwick also served as a senior economist at Mellon Bank from 1990 to 1996. Before entering the private sector, she served as an assistant professor at Trinity College as well as two years as a staff economist on the President's Council of Economic Advisers.

Dr. Hughes-Cromwick has focused on supporting economic education initiatives and has served on the National Association for Business Economics’ (NABE) steering committee to implement the Certified Business Economist (CBE), the certification program in applied economics and data analytics. She is a past president of NABE, and a director of the NABE Foundation which sponsors scholarships for early career professionals to pursue continuing education. 

In addition to her work with NABE, Dr. Hughes-Cromwick just completed a 5-year term on the Board of Directors of the National Bureau of Economic Research, a private non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to conducting economic research. She also served in 2013 – 2014 on the Board of the Council for Economic Education, a leading organization supporting K – 12 economic and financial literacy education. During 2005 – 2008, she was on the Board of Directors, and also served a one-year term as Board Chair, of Operation ABLE, a nonprofit organization in Detroit which helps workers get needed skills training and job placements.

Dr. Hughes-Cromwick earned her Bachelor's degree in Government and French from the University of Notre Dame. She received a Master's degree in International Development and a Ph.D. in Economics from Clark University in Massachusetts. She earned the Certified Business Economist (CBE) designation from the National Association for Business Economics.

Related content

Last updated: 2015-12-15 11:09

Bureaus & Offices

Search by organization name or browse the tree below